Approximately 30%-70% of American men experience premature ejaculation. According to The National Health and Social Life Survey’ (NHSLS), almost 30% of males, through all adult age categories, experience PE. (In contrast, erectile dysfunction rises in prevalence with increasing age). Estimates of premature ejaculation in European countries and India are similar to the prevalence in the United States. The incidence in other parts of Asia, Africa, Australia, and elsewhere is unknown. (Source - https://emedicine.medscape.com/)
Performance anxiety is recurrent and deep anxiety about one’s sexual performance, takes away the pleasure, and results in sexual dysfunction. Performance anxiety is a primary concern among aging and old couples but can affect young ones as well.
In case of men, performance anxiety mostly acts as a psychological contributor to erectile dysfunction. The problem aggravates with time as aging men require more time and more direct sexual stimulation for achieving an erection. That said, certain medicines and heart diseases also lead to erection difficulties.
Another essential point to note is that a man in his fifties cannot expect to have instant rock-hard erection he used to get in his twenties. This expectation itself will result in performance anxiety and affect his sexual life.
Change in physical response is inevitable with age and must not be correlated with change in qualities as a lover. Any attempt at connecting these can cause severe damage to the psyche and affect performance even more. Under such stressful circumstances, repeated failure to get erections is a strong possibility, which will take away the willingness and interest in sex. This can make a man adverse to sexual intimacy in any form for the rest of his life. In such cases, the partner may also get wrong signals like – being rejected, being considered unattractive, and unable to cause arousal. This can damage a relationship considerably, if not permanently. In some cases, the partner may also feel cheated as she might think that the man is having an affair and hence reluctant to get intimate with her.
In some cases, the partners also refrain from touching the man sexually as they fear that such an act might build pressure on the unwilling man. This is even more damaging for the man, as direct sexual stimulation is his only recourse for achieving and maintaining an erection. The outcome is a sad and loveless life, which could have been better and different had the man communicated the much-needed message.
Women, too, go through performance anxiety in their lives. Such anxieties are more common among women who experienced pain while having sex in the past. The bad experience makes them apprehensive that there will be a repetition of the earlier painful episode, which causes performance anxiety. This fear of experiencing pain often reduces lubrication and can also lead to involuntary contraction of vaginal muscles. Result? More painful sex! The fear and apprehension intensify the anxiety further, thereby affecting comfortable and enjoyable sexual activity. For some women, this becomes a reason to avoid sex all life.
The constant highlight by media agencies on the importance of being sexually attractive, innovative, accomplished, and open also indirectly creates pressure on the mind and results in a healthy competition, which can potentially lead to performance anxiety and taking away pleasure from sexual life.
Stay in love to combat anxieties and insecurities!!